Friday, September 29, 2006

So many options, so few positive reviews...

OK, step two is decide what the f*ck I'm doing here.

(oh yeah, you guys don't know me too well yet so I should explain the cleverly placed asterix there. I'm not a prude or anything -- I'll drop the F-bomb when appropriate and all. But I figure there's no reason to go getting offensive right off the bat. It's not like I'm doing Goodfellas here or anything, right? If anyone isn't sure what the word there is supposed to be just email me and I'll clear it up. Of course, I'll absolutely have to go "duh!" somewhere in that email. Just figured I should warn you. OK, tangent over...)

Where was I? Oh yeah, deciding what I'm doing. Or more to the point, I gotta pick "my site" and I figured this would be a cinch. There are some big players that have commercials on tv and such, and it makes sense to go with a bigger player because they'll have bigger populations to peruse, in theory, right? But when I went to check things out here's what I find:
  1. There are more than a couple of big players
  2. Of those players there are sub-types of sites depending on what you're looking for AND
  3. They're stupidly expensive!
I'll be frank, when I saw the pricetags out there I thought seriously about bailing on this whole thing. But I'm getting ahead of myself. First let me tell you of the variety of options out there.

You gotta figure out if you want to date, hook up or fall in "wove." I'm not much for just dating (our beloved friend and mentor TV tells us that is sucks) and I'm too old and too busy for "hooking up" so it must be Wove I'm looking for. (and can I say how shocking a realization that is for me to make!!)

That decision made I then had to narrow that field. Here are some of the big players I have to choose from:

E-Harmony -- the biggest player out there, who boasts a very accurate personality profile that will determine exactly who you're looking for in a mate
Perfect Match -- another big player, and how they differ from E-Harmony I'm not sure. Client profile? check. Big population? check.
Chemistry -- brought to us by the same folks who created, but this is there relationship site, as opposed to their dating site (which is Hmm, that sentence is a circle. Didn't see that coming...)
Matchmaker -- and with this one I'm beginning to realize there really isn't a big difference with what the various sites offer! I'm buying a dart board tomorrow and letting the pointy feathered bastards make the decision for me.

...except that there is the question of cost. Here's one of the insidious (read: crappy/sneaky!) things about these sites. They pretty much all make you go through the painful and LENGTHY process of completing your profile before they let you see how much it's gonna cost. I discovered this by surfing around and around and around (hey, haven't we see this tree before?) the various sites looking for the nugget of info. You want to see how much it costs to play? You gotta pay in your valuable time first!

I especially love this irony because one of the big reasons that people say they go to these online sites to find Mr./Mrs. Right is a general lack of time. Get it? Lack of time!! Oh, the pain...

"hey, Fem, where did you hear that statisticky-thing about why people do this?"

Oh that. Well when I was trying to figure out which site to pick I started trying to search for info and man-o-man, there are just a crapload (I don't consider this the same as dropping the F-bomb, so you're gonna have to get over my use of the C-bomb. A Lot.) of people out there looking to tell you about the love sites. There are general review sites like E-pinions, there are matchmaking-specific review sites (boy howdy are there those out there) and there are even online magazine sites devoted entirely to online matchmaking. And at this point I'm so very sorry that I'm not kidding about that.

"So didn't you get any good information from these reviews about what site to go through?"

Good question. Thanks for asking. No I didn't.

Tangent: have you noticed that it's generally considered the best review of a product when it comes from a consumer? does it, and and many of the online purveyors of goods (and not-so-goods) and yet I hate these reviews! It's mostly a place where the lackeys of the company that made the product go and rave about it, and then people who had a bummer experience (which is unavoidable no matter how good the product) go and bitch about it. Everything's either amazing or pure crap and it's all so very dramatic. Can't handle the drama, people!

I hoped the online dating online magazine online... anyway, I hoped that they'd have some real info for me, but there wasn't much there either and everything was somewhere between months and years old.

Dartboard, here I come!

Thursday, September 28, 2006

What's a nice girl like me doing in a blog like this...

So here's the deal. I'm thirtyblahness, I'm single and I have been since,... Well, create your pithy metaphor for a long time and insert it here. (also not a bad place for an "insert something here" joke, given my dry spell. I'll let you do that too. I'll wait...)

Why have I been single, single, single? I suppose it depends on who you ask. My friends would say I've got issues, and probably that I'm too picky. One has suggested that I'm just not trying hard enough. Family would say things very supportively, but they probably think I have given up. Many people who have run up against my more difficult personality traits would call me, in the classic vernacular, a beeee-otch! I say it's three things:

-I'm one hell of a handful and most men aren't up for it.
-I have so very little time (work, school, family, etc.) and won't spend it trolling for love
-I don't need someone else. I would like someone else, but I don't need someone else. It makes a difference. Trust me.

I'm sure we'll dwell on my damage many more times in the future, so let me move on.

My parents (I love them, by the way -- you'll hear more about them for sure) had a friend get married after years of being single, and he met his sweety on E-Harmony. So they came back from the wedding really excited that I could use that system too! And because I have no tact I totally shot down the idea. Why? Because frankly I'd just feel stupid putting that kind of time and energy (and money -- those sites are way spendy!) on "finding love." How does one do that and not scream "I'm lonely! I'm desperate! Somebody love me!" My goals til now have been to be A-OK as a solo act. But I am not opposed to a relationship; I just want it to find me. So how to try to appease my parents without feeling like an idiot?

By killing 2 birds with 1 stone!

I'd been toying with the idea of starting a blog for a while (just call me a frustrated William Goldman or Joshilyn Jackson) and here, at last, was a topic worthy of such an endeavor. I'm going to try my hand at this online love thing and you're going to go along for the ride. I hope that it will be worthy of my time writing and your time reading, and I'll make the following promises regarding the adventure:

  1. I'll take this online matchmaking seriously, and be open to any good thing that comes from it!
  2. I'll keep the names of absolutely everybody I mention private, and use nicknames to protect the innocent (just in case I write about someone innocent, but I doubt it) and the rest of my family, friends and friends-to-be.
  3. If this starts to suck, or if it gets to be too, too painful, I'll stop. I promise I'll stop.
  4. Anything I decide to add to the blog that isn't on topic I'll place in a side-spot, so those who don't need to know my favorite 5 books or what I last had to drink can be not bothered. (I'd be not bothered if I were you!)
Good luck to you all, and to me. I'm pretty sure this is the first sign of the apocolypse, so watch for frogs falling from the sky people!